Public health, ethics and non-communicable diseases

8 October 2012

Non-communicable disease prevalence is rising around the globe, shaping the work of public health policymakers and practitioners. In Australia and elsewhere, this agenda is dominated by concern about overweight and obesity. The news media routinely reports on an out-of-control obesity epidemic, costing millions and threatening future generations. This is not just a scientific challenge. It's also an ethical and political challenge. In this seminar we will consider what public health ethics can contribute to the debate on non-communicable diseases. Might some approaches to managing non-communicable diseases in populations be more ethical than others? How can we tell? We will focus our attention especially, but not exclusively, on overweight and obesity.

Come along if you would like to:

  • Hear an introduction to public health ethics from one of the leading international scholars in the field
  • Consider the ethical significance of issues including urban design, eating animals and obesity stigma for the public health response to non-communicable diseases
  • Think about what we should do about overweight and obesity in Australia
  • Be part of a conversation between colleagues from a range of practices and disciplines - we have left plenty of time for a lively debate!


Prof Ross Upshur, University of Toronto, Canada, international leader in public health ethics
A/Prof Peter Sainsbury, South Western Sydney and Sydney Local Health Districts & The University of Sydney
Dr Jan Deckers, Newcastle University, UK
Dr Lenny R. Vartanian, School of Psychology, University of NSW
Dr Stacy Carter, Centre for Values, Ethics and the Law in Medicine, The University of Sydney
With additional chairs and panellists from Faculties across the University.

Time: 8.30am - 5.00pm

Location: Refectory, Holme Building, Science Road, University of Sydney

Cost: Free. Places are limited, so please RSVP soon to

Contact: Lindy Gaze

Email: 595d23510b7c26570b5431453c10143c17482f133d050207

More info: